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Cactus Bowl: Kansas State vs UCLA

Friday, December 22, 2017

Jedd Fisch, UCLA Bruins

Team Arrival Press Conference

Cactus Bowl: Kansas State vs UCLA

THE MODERATOR: Please join me in welcoming Jedd Fisch.

JEDD FISCH: Thank you very much. Thank you for having us here. Our team is thrilled to be a part of this game, to be a part of a great tradition. I played, I’ve been a part of coaching in this game in 2009 when I was at university of Minnesota, and now it’s a great opportunity and in a new stadium to be able to play in the baseball stadium and also to be a part of UCLA and help us win our seventh game this season. And our guys are excited for this championship opportunity.

THE MODERATOR: Any questions?

Q. Could you tell us a little bit about Kansas State. What you think of them?
JEDD FISCH: Sure. Obviously Coach Snyder is going to have a great football team, he always does. He’s going to have a team that plays extremely hard, extremely competitive, extremely physical. They’re a team that is extremely well coached, they have got some special players on both sides of the ball. They finished very strong this year. They won the last couple games, I think three of four, maybe four of five, that I know for sure against Iowa State and Oklahoma State. I think that they’re a team that’s going to come out and be ready to play like our team’s going to be ready to play and we focused in all week of this is a championship game for our team on Tuesday night and we’re going to spend every minute while we are here preparing for that championship.

Q. How is the preparation going? Are you happy with what you guys have done and do the kids feel like they’re ready?
JEDD FISCH: Yeah, I would say that the preparation’s been unique in terms of we have had some opticals or challenges, so to speak, with the wildfires and campus being closed for a few days and then final exams and not practicing during that time, but we’ll have about 10 good practices prior to the game, we’ll practice every day while we are here, we practiced every day the last five days, and our guys have been extremely focused and ready to go and they recognize it’s a championship opportunity for a championship game.

Talk a little bit about your late field goal victory over Cal for your last win to become bowl eligible and how much of that emotion plays into your preparations for the Cactus Bowl.

JEDD FISCH: Yeah, it certainly was an exciting game, under some crazy circumstances. Made a — coach Mora was let go the Sunday after the USC game, we had a short week to prepare for Cal and to become bowl eligible. And our guys were super excited to have that opportunity to, in our mind, get Coach Mora’s team bowl eligible again. And the way the game went, at halftime we lost our starting quarterback, the second half of the game we played with Devon Modster at quarterback, drove us down. And our defense played great in the second half, they got the stops needed. And then we had a great 70-yard drive to kick a field goal to win it. So we were excited and thrilled to be a part of this game.

Q. Does playing in a baseball stadium create a unique problem or advantage for a team?
JEDD FISCH: No, I don’t believe so. I think it’s going to be a really cool atmosphere. I said to our guys, as long as it’s 120 yards and 53 and a third wide, we’re good to go and we’re ready for that. We’re excited that it’s a game where the, I’m sure the grass is going to be manicured beautifully and we’ll be ready to roll. So we’re excited about that game and excited about where it will be played.